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First time building a computer - $500-$700 - Build Advice Please

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December 30, 2009 7:12:29 PM

Hi, this is my first time building a computer and don't want anything REALLY high end (nor can I afford it), but I want something decent enough for my needs. So, any advice or help would be much appreciated.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Probably within the next month BUDGET RANGE: $500-$700 before rebates

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: School Stuff (Word, etc.), Surfing the Internet, Gaming, Burning DVDs

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, Mouse, Speakers, Monitor, OS

PARTS PREFERENCES: I would just rather use Intel than AMD

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe - either way is fine

Here is what I was planning on using (It's subject to change as long as I can keep an affordable price):

Case: ATX/Micro ATX Mid-Tower Blue Apevia X-Plorer
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU: Intel Pentium Dual-Core E5300 2.6GHz 800MHz 2MB Cache LGA775 Socket
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Motherboard: Gigabyte LGA 775 Intel G41 Micro ATX
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Memory: OCZ 4GB (2x2GB) DDR2-800
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Video Card:HIS Radeon HD 5750 1GB 128-bit PCI Express 2.0 x16
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Hard Drive: Seagate 160GB 7200RPM
http://cgi.ebay.com/Seagate-Barracuda-ST3160812AS-160-G...

DVD Drive Samsung 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Power Supply: Corsair 750 Watt SLI/Crossfire Ready
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU Cooling Device: Masscool 92mm Ball Bearing 50.61 CFM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I really want to build a computer, so I don't want to buy a pre-made one or something like that. If u have any comments or advice, I'd really appreciate it since this IS my first time building a computer and I don't know too much about it except for what other people have told me. Thanks.
December 30, 2009 7:42:58 PM

LGA775 is a dead end socket. I would avoid it like the plague, unless you really have a reason to go that route (ie. already have mobo or cpu). And, considering your budget and the things you intend to do on your computer, AMD is honestly the better route to take.

It also looks like you don't intend to crossfire (seeing as you picked a mobo that doesn't support it), so that 750w psu is overkill. You can drop down to a 450/500w psu.

Regarding the video card, the XFX and Sapphire verions of the 5750 are $5 cheaper and come with free shipping. I like XFX because they have lifetime warranties on their products.

$25 for a used 160gb HDD being sold AS-IS, no refunds...or you could pony up $30 and get a new 500gb http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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December 30, 2009 8:57:32 PM

If I drop my RAM down to 2GB and change the power supply, I MIGHT be able to afford a LGA 1156 socket motherboard/CPU, and I guess I'd be ok with that, but would that be better? I know I won't be able to go up to 1366, so...comments?

Yeah, someone told me that I'd need "a real power supply" and he recommended that. Since I don't know anything about them, I pretty much went with it. After I looked at others, I saw like 450-500 watt ones for 20 bucks. That sounds REALLY cheap to me, but I don't know what's the difference between them and others. So, that's something that I need clarification on, if you wouldn't mind.

True, I'll probably go with that then.

I didn't really look at the hard drive to hard, but that one seems nice.
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December 30, 2009 9:15:53 PM

amd am3 is the best option under $900

dunno what you have against amd

SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache IDE 22X DVD±R DVD Burner -

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Rosewill DESTROYER Black Gaming ATX Mid Tower Computer Case ,

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive

GIGABYTE GA-MA770T-UD3P AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HIS H575FN1GD Radeon HD 5750 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Antec TruePower New TP-550 550W Continuous Power

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

AMD Athlon II X3 425 Rana 2.7GHz 3 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Processor

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

thats all for $625
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December 30, 2009 9:30:43 PM

I don't really have anything against AMD, per se. I've just always used Intel and I've heard other people say it's better than AMD. Also, that's what I looked into, so there ya go.
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December 30, 2009 9:39:27 PM

amd is a great budget brand intel my beat amd in the high end market but in the lower mid range market its all amd nowadays
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December 31, 2009 12:27:03 AM

Quote:
amd is a great budget brand intel my beat amd in the high end market but in the lower mid range market its all amd nowadays


+1

If your not going i5/i7 route AMD is the way to go.
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December 31, 2009 1:31:07 AM

Well, if AMD is the way to go, that setup (@ obsidian) is pretty decent. I'd still want my case though, just cause I like the look. I think that would work with my price limit too, which is sweet.

Anyway, that's probably the setup I'm going to use, as long as I'm using AMD.
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December 31, 2009 5:20:53 AM

Ok, so I made two different builds, one with Intel and one with AMD that I can afford. Either one would be good for me, but I want to see what you guys think.

AMD Setup:

Case: ATX/Micro ATX Mid-Tower Blue Apevia X-Plorer
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU: AMD Athlon II x3 425 Rana 2.7GHz 3x 512KB L2 Cache AM3 Triple-Core
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Motherboard: Gigabyte AM3 AMD ATX
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Memory: Kingston 2GB 240-Pin DDR3 FSB-1333
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 5750 1GB 128-bit PCI Express 2.0 x16
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Hard Drive: Something around 160GB-250GB w/ 7200RPM (I'll pick something later...)

DVD Drive Samsung 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Power Supply: OCZ 550W ATX 12V
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU Cooling Device: Masscool 92mm Ball Bearing 50.61 CFM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Intel Setup:

Case: ATX/Micro ATX Mid-Tower Blue Apevia X-Plorer
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU: Intel Core i5-750 LGA 1156 2.66GHz 8MB Cache
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Motherboard: Intel LGA 1156 ATX
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Memory: Kingston 2GB 240-Pin DDR3 FSB-1333
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 5750 1GB 128-bit PCI Express 2.0 x16
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Hard Drive: 40GB SATA (It's a spare drive I have right now that I can use until I can get another one)

DVD Drive My own external DVD burner (Again, will use until I can get another one)

Power Supply: OCZ 550W ATX 12V
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU Cooling Device: Masscool 92mm Ball Bearing 50.61 CFM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I know my Intel one has a REALLY small hard drive and uses an external DVD drive, but that's only temporary. I don't mind the memory downgrade since I'm getting better CPU performance and an newer stuff. Anyway, I'd like to go with Intel, just because that's who I like, plain and simple, but AMD would be good too, and cheaper. What do you guys think? Also, do you think it's worth the money to get an 1156 socket right now, since I know that the newest is 1366? Thanks for the help.
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December 31, 2009 7:45:17 AM

Well building a computer depends on your needs, is it gaming or just regualr everyday use? what is your goal in temr sof budget? and moreover at what resolution will you be gaming or working with?

from what i can read it seems like you want the best performance for the money without braking the bank, building an i5 system is possible but you will have to sacrifice a few things for instance get the antec 200 it is cheap but comes with just about all the essential parts and it is from a good brand, you can still buy 4 gigs of ram and i wouldn't worry much about the cpu cooler if you are not going to overclock right away (with turbo boost most i5's do great even at stock speed)...anyways if you want an i5 cpu for cheap see if you can find a micro center near you, they sell the i5 for much less than what you would find on new egg so go on the web site and see what they have to offer first...my personal advice would be to go with AMD, right now they have the best value foir the money if you get a phenom ll 550 or an athlon ll x4 (the 630 not the 620) you can afford the 5770 and many other good parts without braking the bank at all.you save even more money if you choose to go with the 5750 the phenoms all come with unlocked multipliers so over clocking them is made very easy 9just increase the multiplier in bios by small increments of .5 and you can easily get to 3.2-3.4 on stock coolers) if intel is what you want the best thing would be to wait until the core i3's come out in january they should be priced well and will come with some nice perks but i would still suggest AMD for the price of a dual core i3 set up you can get a very nice quad core or tri core amd system that will give you all the performance you need....as far as power supplies go the main things you want to look are: the number of +12v rails,pci e connectors (more is better since high end graphics card usually require 2 or more) and the brand, corsair,antec,BFG are the brands i trust the most but cooler master and a few others are also reliable check the raitings on new egg for some sort of reference and make sure you get graphics card that will give you the performance you need no need wasting money on a card like the 5750 if you game at resolutions below 1440x900
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December 31, 2009 3:41:16 PM

its probably going to be more gaming than everyday use and I'm thinking of getting a new monitor eventually, but the one I have now has a resolution of 1200 x 1024 (=/).

I think I'm probably just going to go with AMD, since it DOES have better prices while still putting out grood performance.
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December 31, 2009 3:45:00 PM


Processor-Mobo-Combo:
Motherboard: ASUS M4A785-M 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
Processor: AMD Phenom II X3 720 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Black
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

HardDrive: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

VideoCard: HIS H577FM1GD Radeon HD 5770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Ram/Memory: A-DATA G series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model ADQVE1B16KG - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PowerSupply-Case-Combo http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
PowerSupply: Antec NEO ECO 620C 620W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Retail
Case: Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

DvdRom: LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW SATA CD/DVD Burner - Bulk - OEM http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Total is $701
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December 31, 2009 3:46:17 PM

Or take out the other 2GB of ram Save $40 and take out the 500GB to a 250GB and save $15 which adds up to $55 and you have that PC for $645
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January 1, 2010 9:54:09 PM

Ok, this is probably what I'm going with - any more comments, concerns, complaints?

Case: Apevia X-Plorer ATX Mid Tower
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811144104&cm_re=apevia_x-plorer-_-11-144-104-_-Product

Motherboard: Gigabyte AM3 AMD ATX Sata 6GB/s USB 3.0
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128419

CPU: AMD AM3 Phenom II x2 3.1GHz Black Edition 2x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Dual-Core
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103680

Memory: OCZ Platinum Edition 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 2000MHz
http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?Product...

Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 5750 1GB 128-bit PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150448

DVD Drive: Lite-On 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827106339

Power Supply: Antec TruePower Continuous Power ATX 12V SLI Certified 80 Plus Bronze Certified
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371020

Heatsink: Scythe 92mm Sleeve 3 Heat Pipes Cooler
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185096

Hard Drive: 160GB Sata 7200RPM
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January 2, 2010 2:13:20 AM

nice, I think I will.
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!